It is possible to speak about God eloquently and passionately without having a loving and intimate relationship with God, or the revelation knowledge of God. It is even possible to experience or receive miracles from God and yet not know God intimately or experientially.
The generation of children of Israel that God brought out of Egypt undoubtedly saw and experienced diverse wonders and miracles of God, heard God’s audible voice, and witnessed God descending mightily upon Mount Sinai; yet they did not know God intimately (Exo. 32:1, Psa. 78:8-19). How sad? What are the true tests or proofs of knowing God intimately?
The effect of the public reading of God’s Word to the Jews who just returned from exile in Babylon and had gathered in the open square that was in front of the Water Gate was very profound and remarkable (Neh. 9:1-2).
God’s Word brought a great conviction of sins upon the people. Consequently, they humbled themselves before God, wept for their sins, and confessed and repented of their sins. Their leaders had to comfort them, saying, “This day is holy to the LORD your God; do not mourn nor weep.” For all the people wept, when they heard the words of the Law.” (Neh. 8:9). This is what I call “the Water Gate experience.”
Amaziah the king of Judah was undoubtedly one of the most unpredictable and unstable kings in the Bible. The Scripture records that “he did what was right in the sight of the LORD, but not with a loyal heart.” (2 Chro. 25:2 NKJV). Sometimes Amaziah would listen to God’s voice and obey God’s law, but at other times he would despise, disregard and disobey God’s voice.
On certain occasions Amaziah would gladly serve and worship the true and the living God, but at other times he would choose and set up his own gods. No one could predict accurately the next step or action of Amaziah – whether he would obey or disobey God, or whether he would serve God or idols…
Judas Iscariot betrayed Jesus Christ with a friendly hug and kiss. Simon Peter denied Jesus Christ three times with curses and oaths. Afterwards, both of them admitted their sins, regretted their actions, and were remorseful.
But while Peter’s sorrow produced repentance and restoration, Judas’ sorrow produced death and destruction (Matt. 26:69-75, 27:1-5). Apparently, there is a great difference between Peter’s sorrow which led to life and Judas’ sorrow which led to death. What is the great difference? The sorrow experienced and expressed by Peter was godly sorrow! The sorrow experienced and expressed by Judas was worldly sorrow!
The undertakers are people whose profession is the preparation of the dead for burial or cremation and the management of funerals; funeral directors (Collins Eng. Dict.). Unfortunately, many so-called ministers of God today are nothing but spiritual undertakers who make much material or financial gains from pampering, entertaining, and preparing spiritually dead souls for eternity of sorrows, pains and torments in hell fire.
The Church today no longer need the service or ministry of spiritual undertakers whose only interest is to manipulate and exploit God’s people, to amass much wealth, and to make sinners feel very comfortable in their present terrible spiritual condition…
While the Lord Jesus delayed in coming to Bethany to heal the sick Lazarus, his condition grew worse and eventually he died. Lazarus’ sisters, Martha and Mary, who had sent a distress call to Jesus to come and heal their brother, became totally frustrated.
Likewise, all the people who had gathered around them, waiting to see how Jesus would heal Lazarus were highly disappointed. They all gave up in despair, leaving the remains of Lazarus for the undertakers to attend to. The undertakers immediately swung into action, wrapping Lazarus’ face with a cloth and binding his hands and feet with grave clothes. Afterwards, they buried Lazarus in the cave and laid a stone against its mouth…